Apple hired a former Tesla software engineer to advance its efforts to develop a self-driving car, sources told Bloomberg. Christopher “CJ” Moore is the second Tesla alum hired for Apple’s autonomous car endeavors, joining Stuart Bowers, who left the electric carmaker’s Autopilot team two years ago.
Moore, who made controversial remarks about Tesla’s Autopilot features, will report to Bowers. Moore was with Tesla for more than seven years.
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Although Apple doesn’t have public plans to release an autonomous vehicle, the latest new hire suggests the iPhone maker is actively working on the technology. Moore is joining an Apple unit that is largely known for being closemouthed, and for having high turnover, per Bloomberg.
Codenamed Project Titan, Apple’s autonomous car project has been in the works since about 2014 but has previously been more of a side hustle than a focal point. Its former leader, Doug Field, moved over to Ford in September as its new chief advanced technology and embedded systems officer.
Moore had reportedly implied while at Tesla that CEO Elon Musk exaggerated what the Autopilot software was capable of accomplishing, according to the report. Moore was also part of an investigation by the California Department of Motor Vehicles earlier in 2021 regarding the software.
He said at the time that what Musk was publicly stating was outside the realms of what could be accomplished as far as engineering. Musk had purported that Tesla was near Level 5 autonomy features, which meant that vehicles were close to operating with no human intervention at all.
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